Our 2023 pledges:
Creating a child friendly Sandwell
We will strive to become a recognised Child Friendly Borough by meaningfully engaging with children and young people, ensuring their voices are heard and empowering them to shape policy and practice. We will ensure families and communities play a part in creating a child friendly Sandwell and give the borough’s children and young people the best opportunities for education and work.
Having effective neighbourhood working
Effective neighbourhood working aims to revitalise neighbourhoods and to work with local people to tackle the issues that matter to them most. We will ensure that across our six towns, there is access to council services and a strong relationship with partners, such as the Police, to deliver on a neighbourhood level.
Being a dementia friendly borough
We are committed to improving and changing the lives of people with dementia and their carers in Sandwell. We will ensure people with dementia and their families have a voice and are able to maintain and, where necessary, increase their social contacts within their local community through sustainable inclusive social activities and services.
Exploring boroughwide licencing to control HMOs
The licencing of HMOs ensures that tenants are provided with the fundamental basic standards of accommodation, which include safe gas and electrical appliances, fire safety precautions, suitable room sizes, and adequate provision of kitchens and bathrooms for the number of occupants. It also requires that the HMO is maintained so that it does not have a negative impact on the local neighbourhood, and that the landlord takes reasonable steps to deal with any anti-social behaviour by the occupants.
Continuing to invest to improve the quality of our green spaces
We have invested £4.5m in our green spaces in 2022/23 and are committed to continuing to invest to improve the quality of our green spaces over the coming years. Working closely with Friends groups and the wider community, we are setting high aspirations for our green spaces, particularly some of the areas that have not received as much investment previously, to ensure everyone in Sandwell can enjoy our wonderful green spaces.
Continuing to support our residents through the cost of living crisis
We will continue to support our residents through the cost of living crisis, especially those who are most vulnerable. We have retained a 100% council tax reduction scheme for those on the lowest incomes, we will continue to provide free and low cost activities and we are investing in our welfare rights service and other voluntary sector advice services.
In addition to our manifesto pledges, we will continue delivering on our medium and long-term objectives around the climate change agenda, school building programmes, tree planting, active communities, house building and attracting investment for regeneration including working towards establishing a university campus in Sandwell.
We will continue developing Forge Mill Farm as a centre of excellence for animal welfare and we will embed best practices from last year’s pledges, such as the Environment Response Team, into how we do things going forward.
We are looking forward to opening the Sandwell Aquatics Centre to the public in the summer and realising the legacy benefits to Sandwell from hosting the swimming and diving events for the Commonwealth Games.